Modern man say that life is movement. Do you agree with that? How do you understand life?
The following verse was read:
A kind word from the mouth is the key to the heart.
Which word in the cited verse is most essential? A kind word. Wherefrom originates the kind word? Wherefrom evolves love? Can one say that love ensues from life? Can the reason ensue from the consequence? You may say that love creates life. No, love cannot create life. Why? Life cannot be created. To create is a mechanical process. Homes are being created and built, but in this sense life cannot be built. You may then say that life is existing. Life is without beginning and end. Can you say about that which has no beginning and no end, that it exists? In its primary origin the word "exists" was in an ascending degree, but gradually it has descended and today we see it in the Bulgarian language in a descending degree. The word "sashtestvouva" comes from the root "sa" which means manifestation, made known. This means that life manifests itself.
I will ask you a few more questions. Can that which manifest itself run out? If you say that everything that manifests itself runs out then I will ask you: Where then remains life? What do you understand by the word LIFE? Reading your assignments, I notice that you have the desire to write something beautiful, with beautiful words but without containing the truth. In this respect, you are like modern ladies who dress in beautiful expensive clothes to impress the world without paying attention if the clothes are warm, hygienic. But that which is acceptable in the world is not permissible for a student of the occult. When a worldly man is hungry, has travelled several days without food, has no friend to whom to reach for help, he will beg from this or that person, appeal to their kindness, to their goodness, hoping that they will give him food. Yet when the student of the occult finds himself in a similar situation, he is not permitted to speak so much. These are superfluous words. He ought to say: "I am hungry!" Nothing else. Any other word is out of place. He who hears him will say: "This man is hungry, let's give him food." Everybody knows what hunger is. If the hungry person starts explaining why he is hungry, how long he has not had any food, everyone who passes by him will say: "Leave him alone. Don't listen to him. This man is not hungry." Hunger by itself is something very powerful. Any explanation around it weakens it.
Let us go back to the question about life. What do you think? Is it possible to explain what life is? Someone will say that life is consciousness, i.e. that outside the consciousness life does not exist. The word "saznanie" (consciousness) is made of "sa" and "znanie", i.e. with knowledge. Since our consciousness does not embrace the totality of life, life cannot originate from consciousness. Consciousness is not capable of enveloping even our own life, so much less the total life. If we accept life as a movement, the movement by itself is embraced by consciousness. Even less, therefore, can life be considered as movement.
Let's continue in your line of thinking. What do you think? Is consciousness something constant? It is not constant. Is it therefore possible to measure life with an inconstant measurement? If consciousness is something constant, let us put it on a ten-day fast to see if it will retain its form or if it will change it. Under this circumstance, we will notice that at the beginning the consciousness was clear, but gradually it became dimmer. When your consciousness is clear you are peaceful, relaxed and contented. As soon as it starts to become dimmer, you become nervous, discontented; you cannot compose yourself. Therefore if consciousness is a constant, unchangeable measure, we could say that life can be compared to a consciousness. But it is impossible to compare life to the unstable, changeable quantity that represents consciousness. An artist paints a nice picture and is joyous about it. What is the reason for his joy - the picture or something else?
Is it possible for a person to be joyous about a subject in which there is no life? Can one be joyous about a precious stone? One cannot be joyous about a picture or about a precious stone. It is something else that causes joy. A young lad loves a young girl. If this young man finds a precious stone and presents it to his beloved, he will be joyous. His joy in this case is not because of the stone but because he has given it to his beloved. If she did not exists, the precious stone would have no value for him.
And so, let everyone answer in himself as to what is the meaning of his life. Think about it. Reflect especially on the word "life" and observe how you feel it deep within yourselves, with what in you this word is connected. Do not try to find out what philosophers and scientists have said about life. It is of importance what position this word occupies in your life. Spell aloud the word "life" slowly in the form of a song, paying attention to what impression it will make on you. At first glance this word seems to be simple, but one of the great truths of nature is hidden in it. You have never addressed to yourself the question whether you are living in order to feel how interesting life is.
Now you are called students of a special class. Imagine that you take all the works that you have written on life and read them to a gravely ill person. What do you think? Are your compositions going to awaken life in this ill person? What do they resemble? At night you go to bed, fall asleep and the next morning you tell your family that you have been somewhere, walked around, met many people. Is this true? Your body was lying in bed, your hands and legs have not moved from their place. How have you walked? Were you awake or in a state of sleep? You were sleeping. If you were awake you would have remembered where you had been. You are experiencing the same state even when you are awake. You only think that you are awake. No, you are not awake. You are still asleep but the time has come for you to awaken. It is not only I who is saying that you sleep; you too say that. When a new idea enters your mind, you say: "I have awakened! Strange that I have been asleep until now!" When you find yourselves in a greater light you say: "Now I can see, as if I have awakened from a deep sleep." It is clear that you are in a state of sleep because all the subjects around you, all your concepts about things, are scattered, disconnected in your mind. In saying that you are in a state of sleep, I do not criticize you but wish to give a new direction for your thoughts.
What is the meaning of the word "asleep"? Imagine that you go to a music teacher with the desire that he would teach you. The teacher shows you the violin, the bow, takes some music scores and observes what you will do. You see the violin, the bow, some little points and lines some going up and others down, after which you depart. This is not yet music. You are intelligent, gifted, you wish to learn music. Again the next day you go to your teacher. He shows you the same things and at the same time gives you a sheet of paper and a pencil and observes what you will do. You reach for the pencil and start describing the violin, the bow, the sheet of music, etc. Again this is not music. On the third day you go to your teacher, you take the violin and the bow in your hands and begin to exercise. The teacher is showing you how to hold the violin and the bow, how to play. This continues day after day until finally you reach the point where you can play by yourself. All tones must pass through the mind, through the consciousness and only then can you say what music is. One can say the same about life. As long as you did not know how to play, you were in a state of sleep in respect to music. As soon as you had learned how to play, you awakened for music. Have you tried out life? You say that life is joy. Have you experienced joy? There are many sorrows in life. Have you experienced these sorrows? People have not yet tried true sorrows. Is the sorrow of a sheep that looses its life the same as the sorrow of a person who has lost a hat. What kind of sorrow is it that someone has lost his hat? This is not a sorrow at all; this is an illusion. I know only one sorrow, and this is caused at the loss of love. There exists no greater sorrow, no greater grief than when you have experienced love and later lose it. This is a true and real grief. Therefore, one can grieve only for that which is real and not for the illusions of life. When does one experience joy? When one finds that which once was lost.
Life requires two important things. These are food and water. That means that hunger and thirst are two powerful things which deprive all beings of life. When man hungers, life manifests in him, it requires food. As long as he does not receive this food, he experiences torment, restlessness, suffering. As soon as he receives the food, peace and satisfaction set in. This is how the simple, uneducated people understand life. You may say: "Are food and water the only necessities of life?" Many are the elements which life requires. I will give you the following example. A person is detained in a room, and from time to time bread and water are brought to him. He remains in the room for a year or two, and all know as well as he himself, that he is alive, that he lives in this room. After some time they lead this man out into a beautiful garden. In this garden he can freely walk around, breathe the fresh air and enjoy the light. He says: "Now I am living!" Not long after that, he is been taken to a wonderful library and left alone to read in freedom and according to his desire. This person feels contented, happy, saying: "Now I live even better. I have started to understand what the meaning of life is." As you see, this man was living even in the first condition but as a prisoner. In the second case, too, he was living but already free from imprisonment. In the third case he lives as a human, with all his external and internal needs satisfied.
Life must be understood in all its subtle manifestations, in all its finest requirements. He who experiences life in all its subtle and rational manifestations is always glad, because the circle of his activity broadens. He experiences the pleasant feeling of growth, his mind, his heart, and his soul are imbued with life. I am using the word soul, but for you the soul is something undefined. The soul is something beyond time and space - it cannot be measured. The soul embraces time and space. In reality, what is time and space? These are two temporary measurements with which things in the physical plane are defined. Life evokes a warm and tender feeling in man. He who has experienced this feeling can never forget it. Imagine that you are climbing a slippery rock. You move slowly, carefully, but by chance you slip. In this moment a friend grasps your hand and holds you back. In this change from feelings of terror which you experienced and the help which you received, a tender warm feeling awakens in you - the manifestation of life. You will never forget this feeling throughout your life no matter what difficulties and obstacles you may pass through. The greater the love of your friend was, that much stronger this feeling will be. He has supported you, risking his own life. Analyze this feeling in you, so that you may at least understand the external aspect of life.
What are the qualities which are ascribed to life today? It is been said that life brings joy, sorrow, movement. Others maintain that life is a condition of the soul in which it becomes self aware, i.e. it realizes that it lives, that it is in a harmony with itself, with the great laws of nature. To be in harmony with yourself means that everything in yourself is in perfect order and put to right. Imagine that you have a beautiful, well organized garden, all the paths are covered with sand and that you take a stroll through the paths feeling glad and happy. Inadvertedly you leave on the paths behind yourself a pot here, a stool there, somewhere else you scattered some stones. In the evening you return home with the feeling of satisfaction that everything is in good order. It happens that the same evening, rapt in your philosophical contemplations, you have the desire to go for a walk in your garden and breathe some fresh air. As you walk along the paths, you stumble in the pot and wonder who has left it there in your way. Further along, you stumble in the stool or in some of the scattered stones wondering who might left them there in your way. You forget that you have left these things on the paths of your garden. Stumbling from one object into other, finally you wonder: How could the world have turned upside down? Who was he who has turned the world into this state? It was you and only you. You have turned your world head down. You alone have placed obstacles on the path of your life. You stumble on something and start grieving. Is it necessary to grieve that a little stool has been knocked down? Would you grieve that you have stumbled on something and have fallen to the ground? You need to grieve if you understand that an enemy of yours has placed these obstacles in your way. But if you know that you have caused that, there is no need to grieve. In this case the only thing you need to do is to bend over and remove the obstacles from your way and put them aside.
Therefore when you study life, start from its most essential, most basic manifestations. When it comes to the essence of life you will never be able to answer this question. To understand the essence of life is to understand what God in His fullness represents. It is impossible to understand God in His totality. You cannot understand even what is the alertness of His consciousness. In every instant He is awake, His consciousness embraces everything, He feels Himself Master, unobstructed, mighty in His ability to do what He wishes. To us this concept is inconceivable. You become aware of yourself that you cannot do what you wish to do and feel unhappy. There is no need for you to suffer. Even in your helplessness, lies your growth: today you are filled with joy, you jump, you sing, you think that you can accomplish anything. Tomorrow you see that you can accomplish nothing. Today you rise; tomorrow you descend, but you do not know why you climb or why you descend. Right in these contrasting states you grow. If you are asked why you have come into the world, you can give no answer. Wherefrom you have come, again you know nothing. Some philosophers, some scientists say that you have come from the world beyond but you have no memory of that. Do you have any memory from the world beyond? Not only do you not remember that, but you do not remember anything from the first year of your birth. Do you remember something from the first year of your childhood? You remember nothing. You have no memories from your second, even third year of life. Possibly only in your fourth year of life your consciousness has slightly awakened, and you keep some memories from that time.
When you contemplate this way, when you analyze yourselves, you will conclude that there exist difficult questions to resolve which you need to put aside. For example, what would you write on the subject "What is God?" Some of you will write that God represents that Archetypal great Power which has created the world, penetrates the atoms and molecules and moves them. That this power has created the whole cosmos, all worlds, oceans and seas, etc. - This is not God. Others will write that God is Love. In what consists this love? - When God, i. e. God's Love imbues a man, he feels within himself a warm, broad feeling toward everything living in the world. Such a man is not petty minded; he has a proper attitude toward everything. Nothing is able to disturb his inner balance. Even if he is robbed of his millions, if he is deprived of his home, he does not wince. He knows that the warm, great feeling which he experiences within himself costs more than all the wealth in the world. He also knows that nothing in the world is lost. When he is robbed he enters into those who have robbed him and becomes master again.
When one form is destroyed, life passes into another form and that feeling of love again is preserved. There is no form in the world which could confine this feeling. It is not terrible for a form to be destroyed. It is terrible rather if a man loses this feeling, when love abandons him. He who has this feeling within himself, even meeting a bear in his way, will remain calm and composed. Why? Because he will enter into the bear with his consciousness, of course, and the bear will yield. The man of love knows that the One lives in all beings. As long as you look at all people, all living beings as something apart from you, from your consciousness, you will always suffer. Then a bear or people will harm you. Regard all beings as consciousness through which flows one and the same life. Life is One, and one Consciousness flows through all living beings.
I will give you now an assignment, an experiment to transform a state of sadness into a joyous one. Imagine that you rise in the morning and deep within yourselves you feel a great sadness. You want to work, but you do not feel like working. You wish to converse, but you do not feel like talking. You can hardly stand anyone, you love no one. Your sorrow increases more and more and you reach a state of desperation. What should you do in such a case? How would you help yourselves? Here is what you should do. For only one moment, become silent and calm in yourselves and pass the state of sadness through your consciousness. After that, try to transform it according to the laws of harmony. If you succeed you will notice that in your consciousness a little joy will penetrate, and your sadness gradually will become powerless and gradually disappear. This means that the joy penetrates the sorrow and it will disappear completely. After that, man comes to realize that there is no need to be sad. In case that the reverse process takes place, then the sorrow penetrates the joy and chases it out. All of you have experienced that. One day you make one hundred Leva (Bulgarian currency), and you feel joyful. The next day you lose these one hundred Leva, and you are sad. These kinds of joys and sorrows are temporary and transitional, but through them a man grows and develops.
These are experiences which everyone of you has gone through in the past and passes through every day. For example, you are a student in a school of the Occult. You think of something beautiful and you are joyous and satisfied with yourself. Your teacher comes and tells you that you are a first-class "know-nothing". You believe him and immediately sink into dejection; you lose your good state of mind. I ask: "Should a student become discouraged immediately?" If he has knowledge, can this knowledge be erased because of only one word of his teacher?" On your back, you carry a sack with forty kilograms of gold. An acquaintance meets you, and asks: "What do you carry in your bag?" - "I carry forty kilograms of gold." - "You are wrong. You have no gold in your backpack." - "Haven't I? I will prove to you right away." You take your backpack from your back and start counting. I say: "This is what true knowledge represents. He who has knowledge cannot have doubts in it. Therefore when you are told that you know nothing, you will take your backpack from your back and will start to verify your knowledge.
The purpose of the school of the occult is to free its students of concepts which have outlived their time, which the past centuries have deposited in their consciousness. Modern people's concepts are like paper money, like the bills which they use. At present the gold is hidden away, and the people use paper money which loses its value every day. This means that there is some insecurity in the life of the people from which they have to free themselves. One can say the same also about knowledge. Certain thoughts are stored in the subconscious of man, certain ideas which are not real, which lack positive value. For this purpose your consciousness needs to be stirred up so that you may free yourselves of the unreal knowledge and keep only that which is connected with certain experiences. If you cannot help yourselves, have some of your friends come and do this work. If he understands the Laws, your friend can change your state and you will see that the knowledge which until this moment you have valued is worth nothing. We call this change of state occult massage. Medicine too recommends massage as well as the occult but under the condition that the mind of the student is focused. You need to know that not all experiments which you make will be successful. If out of one hundred experiments only ten are successful, these will be sufficient to add something to your belief in the Laws of rational nature.
We turn back again to the basic ides - to life. Many say that life is movement. Movement exists only where that pleasant, inner feeling of love toward all living beings functions. Wherever this feeling functions, life is there. When you rise in the morning you ought to experience this feeling in yourselves so that during the entire day you can be good, active with an impulse for every kind of work. This means to feel the impulse of every living being on a higher or lower level than you.
The first law of life is polarization. This indicates that the circle which represents the whole of life is geometrically divided into two equal halves. The letter "Ж" with which the word life (in Bulgarian "zhivot") begins is made out of the two halves of the circle turned in opposite directions connected in the middle through the diameter of the circle. This movement continues into endlessness. These curved lines are called parabolas. If a body moves along such a curved line it will go into infinity. When a body starts to move from the thumb of the right hand up to the index finger, after one, after ten, after one hundred, after one thousand years, or more it will come back through the left hand coming down from the index finger and reach the base of the thumb of the same hand. When you connect the tips of the two thumbs and the two index fingers of the two hands, the shape of man comes about to form. These two half-circles which are formed when the thumb and the index finger of the two hands separate represent the polarization of the human life. Therefore man is derived from the movement of these two half-circles. The circle itself represents the Divine consciousness in which man moves. This consciousness is the common centre of every movement.
The second law which the development of life follows, is the descent and ascent. In descent we have decrease, while in ascent we have expansion, magnifying. In these two situations, the warm tender feeling in man at times disappears while at other it appears again, i.e. at times it diminishes, while at others it expands. This pleasant feeling lasts only for an instant, but when it disappears one feels an emptiness. The smallest cause is capable to bring a man in the position to lose this pleasant, beautiful feeling. Yet as you have lost this feeling in the same way you can regain it. Therefore understand life as an instant. It manifests itself in time and space but exists from without time and space. Based on this, life cannot be grasped, but must be felt. Therefore man only ascertains that this feeling has manifested or has disappeared. Yet it cannot be determined when this happens. The moment in which life manifests itself is from without time and space.
When you draw a line through the centre of the human face, the letter "Ж" (zh) is formed. This indicates that the human face is polarized, i.e. it divides into two parts. In one part the feelings come first, and secondly come the thoughts. In the other side of the face, the opposite takes place; first come the thoughts and secondly - the feelings. When you speak of the man of the flesh, i.e. the man who descends, we understand that in him the feelings have taken first place over rational life, whereas when we speak of a spiritual man we understand that rational life in him has taken superiority over the feelings. This can be noticed, on the human face: when the base feelings have superiority over man's thoughts, the lower part of his face becomes hardened, wider. If the sublime thoughts and feelings in him are superior, then the upper part of the face narrows and becomes more refined. This is a diagnosis by which one can define the movements of the inner life of a man.
During the course of one week, make the following observations of yourselves. When you rise in the morning, try to define if this pleasant feeling exists in you, This is an unchangeable feeling and exists in every human, but you need to make observations, to understand it properly and separate it from other feelings. When you concentrate on yourselves, you will be able to perceive this pleasant feeling of love, you will take notice without any critique. Some of you will notice that this feeling manifests in the mind, others - in the heart, and still others - in their consciousness. If it is in their consciousness, they will perceive it in the form of a small delicate, pleasant light. It comes from the centre of their consciousness in the form of a rational power. Only the slightest touching of this light, this reasonableness, is enough to transform a man, to make him to have a wise approach to things. This indicates awakening of one's consciousness, this means reasonable life. When you sink into a gloomy condition, this luminous centre gradually darkens, around it form small black points which constantly move. When they move they obscure the light rays of this centre.
As students of a school of the occult, I wish you to live and benefit from your own experience and not from the experience of other people. As long as you avail yourselves of your own experience, you will rest upon the Eternal Rock, where there exists no danger, no surprises. If you lack your own experiences, everyone can fool you and make you fall. You may say that this or that is supposed to be real or be unreal. I ask: "Are you living?" If you live, if you rest on the Eternal Rock, everything there is real. One can easily check this. How? Take the candle of your life and see if you can read in its light. - "I cannot read." - If you cannot read, you are not in the realm of reality. Now come to me and see if you can read in the light of my life. - "I can read." If you can read, now the two of us are in reality. This reality never changes. The martyrs in whom the feeling of life is developed never waiver. Tortures, persecutions, sufferings are not able to shake, to weaken them. They always retain their pure joy. Therefore when it comes to life, do not search for it somewhere else, in the cosmos, in the sun. Where is life? Within yourselves. Be deeply absorbed in yourselves if you wish to find life. This feeling of life which is known by the occultists as Divine consciousness, moves with an unimaginable speed. It moves with such high speed that in only an instant you can go wherever you wish: to the sun, to Sirius, to Venus. Since this movement is absolute, it seems as if it swallows all other movements and its own remains unnoticeable.
Those of you who did not have this experience, may say: "It could be so, or not so." But at some point of time when you reach this feeling within yourselves you will be able to see with what great speed it moves. Then you will feel that the whole cosmos, all living beings from the minutest ones to the largest, from the flies to the angels, all are within you. This movement manifests itself everywhere; it is life itself. I wish you that this feeling manifests itself in you and that all of you come to realize life in yourselves.
For one week make an experiment to observe yourselves and see if you will be able to discover this feeling from within yourselves. There will be something that you will discover. All ancient schools have thought that a man cannot come to understand other people's lives as long as he does not understand his own. Do not think that your present life is bad. No, it is the best life that you can have at present. For now a better life than this cannot be given to you. Next time I will test someone of you so that we may see what he has understood of this lecture. All students will each tell him a scornful word, and we will see how he will be able to transform these words. It is not easy to pass such a trial. Naturally he who will be subject to such an exam must have a strong back to be able to endure. Have no illusions that you will be spared of such trials. All of you will pass through a sieve. This trial is horrifying. It is a surgery which requires a great presence of mind. He who is to undergo this trial will be placed in a retort and the trials will start in it.
Many of you seeing themselves in the retort or on a surgical table will say: "We did not expect that these people who seemed to be so kindhearted could act in such a cruel way toward us. You need to realize that in the school the following morale is often applied: the beginning is bad; the end is good. As long as the final result is good the actions are moral. The end results are important for us. Do not think that it is required of you to give up your life. No, we wish to point out to you the right way. We wish to give a way to all that which from centuries back has been implanted in your souls. We wish to give a chance to grow for all good seeds, all powers in you to develop, to become ennobled. If this is not achieved, the way in which you are living at present will hinder your development. This is the reason why the Schools of the Occult have gone underground. Why? Not knowing the laws, the people have caused great damage with their curiosity to these schools. They have behaved with these laws as some people act toward trees in bloom today. Someone passes by a blooming tree and without thinking much breaks off a branch. In this way ten people come along, and everyone breaks off a branch until the tree is mutilated. When someone makes experiments, there exists the danger that several people will pass by him and each one will break off a branch and cause him harm. This is the reason that Christ told his disciples to protect themselves from the swines. When the flowers and trees are in bloom, enjoy the beautiful aroma from a distance and in no case touch their bloom. This is the great law of nature.
Now I will make the following analogy: when a pupil or a student is interested in the subject on which the teacher or the professor is lecturing, the teacher is especially well disposed toward the student. If the student is negligible in his homework, the professor too is negligible toward him. In the same way when we too are interested in this psychologically important moment of life, the beings which stand higher than us who have completed their evolution start to pay attention to us and help us. Between theirs and our consciousness comes about an inner connection. These beings are close to you, but in order for you to feel them your consciousness needs to awaken; the tender feeling of life needs to manifest itself. You will feel then that life exists even there where you have never expected it. You will feel that this life is rational, something that you have not thought about before. Intelligent powers will start to flow into the world from where you have never before expected them. Such will be the result of your first experiment.
If, for example, in this situation you have planned to climb the Mt. Moussalla, one of these rational beings will speak to you and will precisely arrange the program of your travel. It will tell you at what time to depart, which way to take, at which kilometre a bear will cross your path and that you should not be afraid. You start your trip to Moussalla and everything happens as you have been instructed. After that you will be told that an old man will meet you and stop you to have a conversation with you. Further on you will meet a young maiden who will only smile at you. You walk, and truly it comes to pass that all things that have been told to you happen. You come back home and recall all happenings and say: "Did someone speak to me or not?" Truly someone spoke to you. This evolved being conducts a second and third experiment with you. It tells you: "Go to such and such place, you will dig and find a treasure. After that you will walk deep into the woods to a distance of about ten kilometres. You will dig the ground, and in that place you will find a valuable manuscript. You will discover the key to this manuscript and will read it."
I ask: "Is this an illusion or reality?" Everything about which you have been instructed has come true. Yet when the spirits are speaking, things do not come true. Everything the spirits tell you does not come to pass. When the rational evolved beings speak to you everything is absolutely true without any exceptions. Finally after you have made these few experiments, your friend the evolved being will say to you: "Be cautious in your life because we see everything. Be cautious in your thoughts, desires and actions because we know everything." You will then believe in this feeling in yourselves, and in this way you will gain a valuable experience.
Again you will hear the voice of your friend: "Always be careful."
Fir - Fuer - Fen.
Tau - bi - aumen.
4th Lecture of the Youth Class from the vol. "Touching points in Nature", 2nd year, vol. 1, 1922 - 1923, held by the Master, October 25, 1922, Sofia.